Reduced opening and closures for libraries

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LIBRARIES in Rotherham are facing closure under plans to ‘modernise’ services.

Kimberworth and Kimberworth Park library buildings face the axe, while eight others in the area - Brinsworth, Dinnington, Thurcroft, Greasbrough, Kiveton Park, Maltby, Swinton and Wickersley- will see opening times slashed if the proposals get the go-ahead.

Opening hours at Rotherham’s most-used libraries; Riverside House, Aston, Mowbray Gardens, Wath and Rawmarsh, will be extended from between three to 13.5 hours per week under the new regime.

The plans come following an assessment of need carried out by Rotherham Council while it attempts to run services with a reduced budget.

Bosses say the changes would save them around £500,000.

It has now launched a public consultation inviting people to have their say about the recommendations.

Elenore Fisher, customer and cultural services manager for Rotherham Borough Council, said: “It’s great news that our assessment shows people continue to value their library service, and that there is a need for it to be available in every community in Rotherham.

“However, every community is different and the modern library service, with all it has to offer, has to be in a position to respond to their needs. Our research has shown that not every community necessarily needs a library building and the hours during which the service is available may not be as appropriate as they once were.

The plans at will be discussed at a meeting of Rotherham Council’s cabinet on Wednesday, June 20.